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Chapter 5: The Deployment Cycle: Mobilization and Deployment Operation: Military Kids Ready, Set, Go! Training.

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Presentation on theme: "Chapter 5: The Deployment Cycle: Mobilization and Deployment Operation: Military Kids Ready, Set, Go! Training."— Presentation transcript:

1 Chapter 5: The Deployment Cycle: Mobilization and Deployment Operation: Military Kids Ready, Set, Go! Training

2 Deployment and the Community Blanket Activity

3 The Cycle of Deployment Each stage characterized by a timeframe and specific emotional challenges Failure to adequately negotiate can lead to significant strife Promoting understanding of deployment helps avert crisis and need for intervention/mental health counseling Five distinct stages— — Stage One: Pre-deployment — Stage Two: Deployment — Stage Three: Sustainment — Stage Four: Re-deployment — Stage Five: Post-deployment

4 Stage One: Pre-Deployment Shock/surprise for National Guard and U.S. Army Reserve Soldiers, family members Anticipation of loss vs. denial Train up/long hours away Getting affairs in order Mental/physical distance Stress/arguments Timeframe: Variable

5 Stage Two: Deployment Mixed emotions—grief and loss combined with relief Disoriented/overwhelmed Numb, sad, alone/lonely, feelings of abandonment Sleep difficulties Security issues Frequent communication helps all cope Timeframe: Approximately first month, potentially more

6 Stage Three: Sustainment Separation anxiety New routines established New sources of support Feel more in control—Able to cope Independence Confidence—”I can do this” Phone contact unidirectional—initiated by spouse; may lead to feeling trapped as may miss call Timeframe: Approximately months 2 through 18

7 Understanding Separation Anxiety Preschool or Kindergarten children: — Clinging — Unexplained tears, crying — Change in relationships with same-age friends — Preference in spending time with adults — Increased acts of violence toward people, pets, things — Isolation — Sleep & eating difficulties — Fear of new people and/or situations

8 Understanding Separation Anxiety Primary School children: — Same as previous slide, plus… — Rise in physical complaints (stomachaches, headaches) when nothing seems wrong — More irritable or cranky — Increase in problems at school — Drop in grades — Unwillingness to go to school — Odd complaints about school or teachers

9 Understanding Separation Anxiety Adolescents — Same as previous slide, plus… — Acting out behaviors (trouble in school, at home, or with the law) — Low self-esteem — Self-criticism—blaming themselves for situation — Misdirected anger (i.e., excess anger over small events) — Sudden or unusual school problems — Loss of interest in usual activities/hobbies

10 Stage Four: Re-Deployment Anticipation of homecoming Excitement Apprehension—“Will I have to give up my independence”? Burst of energy; “nesting” Difficulty making decisions Time frame: Months 17–18

11 Stage Five: Post-Deployment Honeymoon period Loss of independence Need for “own” space Renegotiating routines Reintegrating into family Most important stage to get to know one another again— patient communication, going slow, and lower expectations are key Timeframe: 3–6 months or more after deployment

12 Strengths for Youth Resulting from Deployment Fosters maturity Growth inducing Encourages independence Encourages flexibility, adaptability Builds skills for adjusting to separation and losses faced later in life Strengthens family bonds Civics—relationship with community What other strengths may result from deployment?

13 Symptoms of Deployment Stress in School Settings Unable to resume normal Gain or lose significant amount class assignments/activities of weight in period of weeks Continued high levels of Discontinue care of personal emotional response (i.e., appearance crying & intense sadness) Exhibit possible alcohol/drug Difficulty concentrating in abuse problem school Frequent absences Express violent or depressed Experience decline in feelings verbally or through performance and grades that drawings/play does not improve over time Intentionally hurt self or others

14 Suggested Healthy Responses By Adults Educate self on the impact of deployment on children/youth and families Reflect what you see and hear in terms of their behavior to help them with understanding Be patient, understanding, caring, and firm with consequences for misbehavior Help children/youth identify, accept, and express what they are feeling Model constructive ways of dealing with strong or challenging emotions such as anger, grief, loss, sadness

15 Other Deployment Stress-Related Issues Combat Stress—Natural result of heavy mental and emotional work when facing danger in tough conditions; physical symptoms (i.e. headaches, racing heart fatigue, anger) generally get better with rest and replenishment Post Traumatic Stress Disorder—Possible response when deployment has occurred to war zone, natural disaster site or urban riot location: physical, mental, and emotional symptoms that require professional assistance Secondary Traumatic Stress—Possibly experienced by family members upon return of Soldier; stress resulting from helping or wanting to help a suffering or traumatized person (Figley, 1993)

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